The pandemic fueled an outpouring of new coffee and creamer launches.
The global coffee alliance between Nestle SA and Starbucks has produced two new retail pumpkin spice products.
Inspired by the Pumpkin Spice Latte made in Starbucks cafes, the new Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Non-Dairy Creamer is made with a blend of almond milk, oat milk, coconut oil and pea protein plus pumpkin, cinnamon and nutmeg flavors. The vegan creamer contains 30 calories, 5 grams of sugar and 1 gram of fat per 1-tablespoon serving and retails for $4.99 per 28-oz bottles.
The new Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Cold Brew Concentrate features cold-steeped 100% arabica coffee blend with hints of pumpkin, cinnamon and nutmeg flavors. The medium-roast flavored coffee concentrate contains 15 calories per 2/4-cup, requires only the addition of water and retails for $9.99 per 32-oz bottle.
Tony’s Coffee Brew Bags are new single-serve, nitrogen-flushed, ready-to-brew certified organic and fair trade coffee. The bags simply require steeping in hot water for 4 to 6 minutes. The tea bag-inspired offerings come in two blends: 50th Anniversary Blend, which is a citrusy light-medium roast, and Upland, a chocolatey medium roast.
Each box of Tony’s Coffee Brew Bags contains five single-serve, 15-gram bags that make an 8-oz cup of coffee. The bags are packaged in a compostable pouch and 100% recycled box.
“Customers increasingly want coffee that is both sustainable and convenient, without sacrificing flavor,” said David Yake, director of sales and sustainability at Tony’s Coffee. “While I love tinkering with different brewing gear, I also appreciate an easy, satisfying cup of coffee while camping or on a road trip. People will love the simplicity of our Brew Bags, plus they are eco-friendly.”
Super Coffee is launching a limited-edition fall line of maple pumpkin flavored ready-to-drink coffee, coffee pods and plant-based creamer. The products contain no added sugars, feature a blend of maple pumpkin, protein, antioxidants and MCT oil and are sweetened with monk fruit.
Made with Colombian coffee, Super Coffee’s ready-to-drink maple pumpkin offering contains 80 calories and provides 10 grams of protein and 200 mg of caffeine per 12-oz bottle.
Super Coffee maple pumpkin pods are enhanced with L-Theanine, contain 200 mg of caffeine per brew cup and come in boxes of 10.
Made with pea protein, the plant-based maple pumpkin Super Creamer is dairy-free and contains 5 calories and no sugar per serving.
Berres Brothers Coffee Roasters is unveiling four limited-edition coffee flavors for fall.
The Sea Salt Toffee Crunch coffee combines toffee and hazelnut flavors.
The Pumpkin Caramel coffee offers a subtle pumpkin flavor with a caramel blend.
The Doe Eyes coffee combines Southern Pecan Cream and Highlander Grogg flavors with a taste of butterscotch and a hint of nuts.
The Rack Attack blends Berres Brother’s De-foginator and House Blend and features a mix of roasted beans from Nicaragua, Guatemala and Brazil. The coffee features notes of caramel and chocolate and is the company’s take on a Black and Tan.
“We wanted these flavors to encompass all the activities synonymous with fall — from hunting, to pumpkin carving, to getting cozy around a fireplace,” said Pete Berres, owner and founder of Berres Brothers.
Nestle SA unveiled its fall coffee creamer lineup in August, including two new offerings.
Coffee Mate Natural Bliss Pumpkin Spice Oatmilk Coffee Creamer is a plant-based offering made with oat milk, pea protein and natural pumpkin spice flavors. Each 1-tablespoon serving contains 30 calories, 4 grams of sugar and 1 gram of fat.
Coffee Mate Natural Bliss Cinnamon Swirl Latte Coffee Creamer blends nonfat milk with heavy cream, cane sugar and natural cinnamon flavor. Each 1-tablespoon serving contains 35 calories, 5 grams of sugar and 1.5 grams of fat.
In August, functional beverage brand REBBL took on the coffee category with new REBBL Stacked Coffee. The ready-to-drink cold-brew coffees are designed to provide balanced energy and focus and immunity support, the company said. The beverages combine caffeine with green tea’s nootropic L-Theanine and are made with oat milk, reishi mushrooms, Lion’s Mane mushrooms and MCTs. The coffee comes in four flavors: cafe mocha, vanilla latte, hazelnut latte and straight black. All varieties are USDA certified organic, fair trade, non-GMO, dairy-free, soy-free, gluten-free and vegan.
“We literally ‘stacked’ our best-tasting, fair trade coffee with premium function,” Ms. Neulight said. “Consumers will be left wondering how we stacked so many benefits into one phenomenal sensory experience.”
REBBL Stacked Coffee is available nationwide at Whole Foods Market stores as well as on the company’s website and Amazon. The drinks retail for $3.99 per 12-oz bottle.
In July, Target Corp. expanded its private label offerings with three new Good & Gather plant-based coffee creamers.
Good & Gather Plant-Based Non-Dairy Almondmilk Creamer comes in two flavors: vanilla and vanilla caramel. Both are made with almonds, sunflower oil, pea protein, sugar and natural flavors and contain 30 calories, 4 grams of sugar and 1 gram of fat per 1-tablespoon serving. A 16-oz bottle retails for $2.49.
Good & Gather Plant-Based Sweet & Creamy Non-Dairy Oatmilk Creamer is made with oats, pea protein, sunflower oil, sugar and natural flavors. Each 1-tablespoon serving contains 30 calories, 4 grams of sugar and 1 gram of fat. A 16-oz bottle retails for $2.49.
In April, Starbucks Corp. introduced Starbucks Premium Instant Coffee, the latest retail innovation to come from Starbucks’ global coffee alliance with Nestle SA.
Made with the same coffee beans used in Starbucks cafes, Starbucks Premium Instant coffees are available in three varieties: medium roast, dark roast and blonde roast. All three are ethically sourced and made with 100% Arabica coffee.
Starbucks Medium Roast Premium Instant Coffee is a Latin American coffee with notes of milk chocolate and nuts.
Starbucks Dark Roast Premium Instant Coffee features a sweet, toasted flavor with notes of dark chocolate.
Starbucks Blonde Roast Premium Instant Coffee is bright and complex with a crisp, sweet flavor, the company said.
Starbucks Premium Instant coffees are available nationwide for a suggested retail price of $9.99 per 3.17-oz canister.
“As we’ve all spent more time at home, our daily coffee habits have changed, with 85% of coffee drinkers having at least one cup at home (up 8% since January 2020) and more than 40% of Americans buying types of coffee they had never tried before during the pandemic,” Starbucks said. “Instant coffee is one format customers have been eager to try, with sales increasing 12.5% year-over-year.”
Dunkin’ collaborated with The Coca-Cola Co. and Girl Scouts of the USA in April to debut ready-to-drink bottled iced coffee in Girl Scout Cookie inspired flavors.
Produced and distributed by Coca-Cola, the beverages combine Arabica coffee, skim milk and sugar and contain 37 grams of sugar per 13.7-oz bottle. The drinks come in three flavors: Thin Mints, Coconut Caramel and S’mores.
The Thin Mints variety contains 260 calories, 203 mg of caffeine and 8 grams of protein per bottle.
The Coconut Caramel flavor contains 250 calories, 187 mg of caffeine and 7 grams of protein per bottle.
The S’mores beverage contains 250 calories, 186 mg of caffeine and 8 grams of protein per bottle.
“We’re excited to join forces with Dunkin’,” said Barry Horowitz, chief revenue officer for Girl Scouts of the USA. “Girl Scout Cookies are the vehicle for girls to learn important entrepreneurship and leadership skills that set them up for success in life, and our licensed products help carry that message across the country.”
The Coca-Cola Co. has been manufacturing and distributing Dunkin’ branded bottled beverages since 2017.
“We’re thrilled The Coca-Cola Co. is teaming up with Girl Scouts of the USA to offer three new ways to enjoy Dunkin’ iced coffee on-the-go,” said Brian Gilbert, vice president of retail business development for Dunkin’, which is now owned by Inspire Brands, Inc.
Starbucks Corp. in March launched a new line of beverages aimed at the 72% of households that have never tried a ready-to-drink coffee product, according to the IRI 2020 Household Panel.
To develop the new offerings, Starbucks conducted what it claimed to be its biggest body of research yet. The research found that consumers are seeking a smooth coffee taste with a small amount of milk and flavor, no preservatives, lower sugar and calories and at an accessible price point.
Consumer feedback indicated that cold brew has become more appealing to those not currently drinking RTD coffee, so the R&D team started with a cold-brew coffee base then chose flavor profiles inspired by popular cold coffee beverages from Starbucks coffee shops.
The result is Starbucks Cold & Crafted, made with cold-brew coffee with a splash of milk and light sweetness. The drink comes in three flavors: Coffee with a Splash of Milk & Vanilla, Coffee with a Splash of Milk & Mocha, and Coffee Sweetened Black. The vanilla and mocha flavors contain 90 calories and 15 grams of sugar, while the black variety contains 50 calories and 10 grams of sugar.
“The team’s primary focus was to develop lightly sweetened coffee beverages, below 100 calories, without compromising the taste profile,” said Manpreet Cheema, senior product developer on Starbucks’ R&D team. “Choosing the best roast profiles and brewing method was key to delivering on a smooth, refreshing sip, and we did months of tastings and consumer tests to make sure we got it just right.”
Starbucks Cold & Crafted retails for around $3 per 11-oz bottle at grocery stores and convenience stores.
The beverages are a product of the North American Coffee Partnership, which Starbucks and PepsiCo, Inc. established in 1994.
In March, Danone SA introduced Honest to Goodness, a new brand of plant-based creamers made with responsibly sourced ingredients.
Honest to Goodness creamers are certified vegan, keto-friendly, certified gluten-free and Non-GMO Project verified. The products feature almond milk from an almond supplier that supports pollinators, organic sugar from Brazil, coconut oil from the Philippines, vanilla from Madagascar and salt from the Himalayas. The plant-based creamers are available in three globally-inspired varieties: Madagascan Vanilla Bean, Unsweetened Madagascan Vanilla and Himalayan Salted Caramel.
Founded on a mission to support local communities where its ingredients are sourced, Honest to Goodness partnered with EARTHDAY.ORG’s The Canopy Project in Madagascar — where its vanilla is grown — to work with local tree planting partners to engage with the community to promote agroforestry, environmental literacy and economic development.
“We partner with like-minded brands and companies to bring environmental and societal impact at scale to remote communities and villages where ingredients are commonly sourced, and where the people and the planet deserve care and dedication,” said David Van Siclen, EARTHDAY.ORG’s business development manager. “Every acre planted through this program will not only help restore degraded forests but aim to provide meaningful income to local Madagascar families.”
By the end of the year, Honest to Goodness plans to source all its vanilla from Madagascar through Tambatra, a community-owned cooperative created with support from the Livelihoods Funds. The Livelihoods Funds is investing in a partnership with a Malagasy nonprofit that helps vanilla farmers have more control over the initial stages of vanilla bean processing, gain transparency into vanilla bean pricing and access to long-term vanilla bean buyers, improve yields and diversify crops through deployment of agroforestry and other sustainable agriculture practices, and engage in the conservation of natural ecosystems near their farms.
“In creating Honest to Goodness, we were passionate about developing a unique plant-based creamer that tastes delicious and also gives back to the planet and regions where we source our ingredients,” said Olivia Sanchez, vice president of marketing for coffee creamers at Danone North America. “We are on a mission to bring goodness to your coffee cup, and when you sip our globally-inspired flavors, know that we are committed to making measurable, positive impact in the communities where our high-quality ingredients are grown.”
Honest to Goodness coffee creamers are available in 16-oz cartons via Amazon Fresh and Fresh Direct for $3.99 each. Global Variety Packs are available via Amazon.com and priced at $12 per pack.
Smile Beverage Werks, a Delaware Public Benefits Corp., in March launched a line of compostable K-cup style coffee pods for its brand, Smile Coffee Werks, and for private label for retailers.
Smile Coffee Werks pods are commercially compostable, carbon neutral and made from renewable plant-based materials, according to the company. The pods are compatible with Keurig and Nespresso machines and boast a 12-month shelf life.
Made with coffee sustainably sourced through Rainforest Alliance certified farms, Smile Coffee Werks coffee pods come in three flavors: High Country, a 100% Colombian RFA coffee; Werkday, a single-origin medium roast coffee; and Woke Up, a 100% Arabica bean dark roast.
“Never has it been so easy and convenient to go green with coffee pods,” said Michael Sands, co-founder of Smile Coffee Werks. “Single-serve coffee is hugely popular but creates burdensome waste to our environment. It’s now super simple for any consumer or private label brand to have a compostable pod and start being more environmentally sustainable.”
Smile Coffee Werks coffee pods are available in packs of 12, 24 and 72 on the company’s website, Amazon.com and Walmart.com.
In February, FreshCap Mushrooms LTD debuted Mushroom Coffee, which blends organic instant coffee with Lion’s Mane mushroom, Chaga mushroom and Ashwagandha for energy, cognition and immune support, the company said.
Mushroom Coffee comes in boxes of 15 to 20 stick packs. The beverage is made by emptying the stick into a mug with hot water.
Cola and coffee collide in Coca-Cola with Coffee, the ready-to-drink (RTD) beverage that hit the United States in January from the Coca-Cola Co.
Coca-Cola with Coffee blends Coca-Cola soda with Brazilian coffee and comes in caramel, dark blend and vanilla varieties. The beverage was first piloted in Japan in 2018, and the United States is the 50th market to launch it.
New Coca-Cola with Coffee Zero Sugar is launching alongside its full-sugar counterpart. The drink is available in dark blend and vanilla flavors.
The idea for Coca-Cola with Coffee Zero Sugar came about after the Coca-Cola Co.’s R&D team conducted consumer research and identified the beverage as an innovation opportunity.
“While other categories including energy drinks have ventured into zero-sugar territory, RTD coffee hasn’t because many offerings are dairy-based,” said Brandan Strickland, brand director of the Coca-Cola Trademark at the Coca-Cola Co. “So we see this as a major whitespace opportunity.”
Both beverages contain 69 mg of caffeine per 12-oz can, which compares to 34 mg in a can of regular Coca-Cola and Coca-Cola Zero Sugar, and 136 mg of caffeine in a 12-oz cup of coffee.
“We’re focusing our innovation efforts on doing what Coca-Cola has always stood for and does best — which is to deliver emotional and functional uplift — in bigger, bolder, more differentiated ways,” Mr. Strickland said. “Coca-Cola with Coffee is a true hybrid innovation that provides the perfect solution for that mid-afternoon pick-me-up we all want, especially in today’s work-from-home environment. We’re fulfilling this need state and occasion in a uniquely Coca-Cola way.”
In January, The Pioneer Woman brand, created by Ree Drummond, partnered with Zavida Coffee Roasters to launch a premium coffee line.
The Pioneer Woman Coffee lineup includes ground coffee beans and single-serve cups, featuring three non-flavored blends: Up & At ‘Em breakfast roast, Saddle Up medium roast, and Giddy Up dark roast. The coffee also comes in a range of flavored blends, including hazelnut vanilla, cinnamon rolls, toffee crème brulee, caramel fudge brownie, pecan pie, French vanilla and pumpkin spice. A Spicy Cowgirl flavor, which is coming soon, features notes of chocolate, cinnamon, chile and cayenne.
“At Zavida, we're all about great tasting coffee — and we're excited to bring our passion for combining the world's best coffees with unique flavors to the Pioneer Woman brand,” said Charles Litterst, chairman at Zavida Coffee Roasters. “Our team crafted these blends to be enjoyed both hot and cold-brewed, so Ree's fans can indulge in her favorite treats one steamy (or iced) cup at a time.”
The Pioneer Woman single-serve coffee cups are available online from Walmart, Amazon and Zavida, and ground beans became available for purchase in late Spring. The coffee line has been rolling out to retailers nationwide throughout the year.
Chobani, LLC launched Chobani Coffee ready-to-drink coffees in January.
Made with single-origin cold brew mixed with Chobani’s oat milks and dairy creamers, Chobani Coffee contains the caffeine equivalent to a standard cup of coffee, about 85 mg of caffeine per serving. The beverages are available in four varieties: Cold Brew Pure Black with no sugar or dairy; Cold Brew with Sweet Creamer; Cold Brew with Vanilla; and Cold Brew with Oatmilk, made with gluten-free oats.
Chobani Coffee Cold Brew Pure Black contains 10 calories, less than 1 gram of protein and no sugar per 12-oz serving.
The Cold Brew with Sweet Creamer and the Cold Brew with Vanilla varieties both contain 170 calories, 5 grams of protein and 22 grams of sugar per serving.
The Cold Brew with Oatmilk contains 110 calories, 2 grams of protein and 7 grams of sugar per serving.
“Nutrient dense Greek yogurt and coffee have long been a perfect pair, fueling our lives throughout the day,” said Peter McGuinness, president and chief operating officer of Chobani. “Chobani Coffee is crafted from single origin 100% arabica beans, geared for the passionate coffee drinker looking for cold-press brews who love the added taste of creamers made from farm fresh milk and oat milk.”
Chobani Coffee is available nationwide for a suggested retail price of $4.49 per 32-oz multi-serve carton.
In January, Danone SA partnered with Post Holdings, Inc. to launch a pair of limited-edition coffee creamers inspired by Fruity Pebbles and Cocoa Pebbles cereal flavors.
“At International Delight, we are always looking to give our fans innovative, can’t-get-it-anywhere-else flavors to enhance their coffee,” said Marie Dobson, marketing director for International Delight. “We want to make that first cup of joe a delicious and fun experience — which is why we are excited to partner with Pebbles cereal to bring these favorite flavors from your bowl to your cup.”
The introduction of International Delight Pebbles creamers coincides with a milestone for “The Flintstones”-themed cereal brand, which debuted in 1971 after Post secured licensing rights from Hanna-Barbera to feature the television cartoon’s characters.
“The International Delight team did a great job of capturing the craveable flavors of Fruity and Cocoa Pebbles cereals in these new coffee creamers,” said Leah Broeders, head of licensing at Post Consumer Brands. “The Pebbles cereal brand has been sparking imagination and bringing joy to fans for 50 years, and we think the new coffee creamers are another fun way for fans to enjoy the flavors beyond the cereal bowl.”
New in January from Z Natural Foods is Mocha Mushroom Whey Protein, featuring a blend of grass-fed whey isolate, MCT oil, 100% cacao chocolate, Colombian dark roast coffee, lion’s mane mushroom extract and cordyceps mushroom extract. Containing 20 grams of protein per serving, the protein is available in 1-lb bags for $19.99 and 5-lb bags for $74.99.
“The whey protein alone provides a long list of extraordinary health benefits, but with the incredibly healthy lion's mane and cordyceps mushrooms, no other coffee mushroom drink comes close to this powerful superfood for cellular growth, repair and antioxidant density,” said Jon Parker, director of nutrition science for Z Natural Foods. “It's almost like drinking silk chocolate. We added the MCT oil because it won't spike sugar levels and gives the mocha a creamy, smooth texture. And with no added gums, fillers and no so-called 'natural flavors' hiding bad ingredients, each drink is tasty and nutritious.”
Recent menu additions focus on relaunches of fan favorites.
Seasonal launches lean into sweet and spiced flavors.